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Old 14th December 2009, 17:25   #1 (permalink)
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Has anybody got a free console with a phone contract?

I've been looking at some of the deals recently. They seem too good to be true really. You know the ones, you take a 2 year contract and bingo, you get a free PS3 console or a Wii.

Has anyone used any of these deals?
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Last edited by peter the postie; 14th December 2009 at 19:07.. Reason: I missed the "e" in recently. What a gorp!
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Old 14th December 2009, 20:07   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Has anybody got a free console with a phone contract?

I have used them for many years and as long as you are sensible and organised then you will be able to effectively make money out of such a phone contract. First let me explain how they work; Phone companies measure their success using a number of metrics, one of which is the number of new customers they get in any given year, so to increase this number they give incentives to 3rd part phone retailers to generate new customers, it is this incentive that the retailers use to finance the incentives like cashback and free gifts. It is somewhat like the car insurance business, we all have learned by now, (haven't we?), that if you stay with the same insurance company they give you a worse deal than a new customer, so I generally change insurance companies each year to benefit from the new customer bonus.

Back to the phone market, first off take heed, the terms and conditions that you are required to meet are usually strict, particularly the times when you need to submit your claim for any money, if you miss a deadline you are usually deemed to have breeched the contract and forfeit any owed benefits, to be fair the retailers give a good deal of the incentive they receive back to the customer so give no quarter if you do not meet the agreed terms.

Next thing, any incentive is between you and the retailer, the network providers like voda and orange etc are not part of any incentive agreement with you and will distance themselves from it. You do however have a contract with them for your line rental, so do not sign up for an airtime contract for more than you are willing to pay if the incentive deal goes south for any reason. It is obvious that the biggest incentives are for the most expensive contracts but if your cash back fails on a £50 line rental contract the network provider will still want paying,(after all they have probably already paid out the incentive to the other company).

There are a great number of comparison sites that list all the deals, I find this one the most useful to do the search, then when I find a deal I like, rather than let them have the referral fee I try and find a cashback site like quidco to do the transaction so that I get the referral fee.

In my opinion cashback deals are more lucrative than gifts, but each to their own. Cash back comes in 2 flavours, instant cashback and installment cashback, for a given deal instant cashback pays less but also carries less risk as the cashback is paid in a relatively short time, installment cashback pays the most but needs more effort to reclaim and carries a risk that the company fails to honour the deal. Gifts are also received in a short timescale, but I would always prefer cash and buy the item from another retailer who will provide proper consumer protection.

So how do I make money? On the assumption that I need a mobile contract in the first place I use the search site and find a deal that is right for me, usually one that offers plenty of free minutes and cashback and a free phone. I then use a referral site that pays me to initiate the transaction and get that cash back, I receive a free phone with enough minutes to do the vast majority of my calls (including ones that previously I would have used BT for so I am on their lowest package). I have been doing this often enough that I dont usually keep the new phone but sell it straight away on ebay for many tens of pounds. At the end of the year I am in profit and have had free calls all year.

You do need to make sure that you understand all the Ts&Cs, that you can cover any contract you sign, that you send bills in on time as required. You will have to change network providers each year, usually you can port your number easily enough (but their are exceptions).

Like I said at the beginning all my family use these deals, they have always worked for us, there is some risk, most of the companies that do these deasl are well established, newer companies will offer better deals but carry higher risk of failier.
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Old 14th December 2009, 20:19   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Has anybody got a free console with a phone contract?

Wow, I doubt I could get a better answer than that! .. At present I'm on 3, and am on a mix & match plan. It gives me 500 minutes/texts (or mixture of both) for £20pm. I've spotted a deal with O2 that gives me 600 minutes & unlimited texts for £25pm, and I can get a free Wii into the bargain.
I'll probably take the offer & sell my present phone which is still quite popular if ebay prices are anything to judge by.

Thanks for all the info Gerald, much appreciated
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Old 14th December 2009, 20:44   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Has anybody got a free console with a phone contract?

Its a good time to renew or change phone contracts the calls are cheaper and they all want your business. My son , who is out of work was going to cancel his contract with t mobile and go will pay as you talk but they offered him 300 mins a month and unlimited texts for £5 a month. No new phone put thats a manageable amount for him to pay to keep in touch .

Always ask for extras too it all adds up. Also if you are going abroad look for the best contract for using a phone abroad, i use o2 , still expensive in turkey but cheaper than a lot of them.
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Old 14th December 2009, 21:21   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Has anybody got a free console with a phone contract?

Don't forget to use a site like quidco if you can.

In fact if anybody buys anything on the internet without checking if the retailer is on such a cashback site, (There are a number of them), they are just giving their own money away

I have had thousands of pounds back from quidco over the years, Yes I really mean thousands!!

Last edited by gerald; 14th December 2009 at 21:24..
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